The No. 1 PR lesson from Yahoo CEO’s résumé gaffe

In journalism, there’s a saying: ‘If your mother says she loves you, check it out.’ Turns out that applies to executives’ résumés, too.

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These days, the same should hold true for CEOs and what they put on their résumés.

In the latest résumé embarrassment, a Yahoo investor called out the company’s chief executive for misstating his academic credentials. An SEC filing, verified by CEO Scott Thompson, stated that he had a degree in computer science. As it turns out, his college said the program wasn’t even offered at the time he attended.

Yahoo continues to be in full crisis response mode since the news broke last week, saying it was an “inadvertent error” and that the company’s board was looking into it. The Yahoo board member who headed the search for Thompson is reportedly stepping down.

Some Yahoo investors are calling for the CEO to resign. What’s so frustrating is that there really wasn’t any need for Thompson to bend the truth; the CEO’s experience at other companies is more important than what degree he did or didn’t earn 30+ years ago.

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